Jag heter Greta Thunberg, jag är en svensk klimataktivist och jag kommer prata engelska nu för en säkerhets skuld, så ni inte behöver låda som om, ni förstår.
Thank you all for being her today. It’s lovely to see – it’s a lot of people, from where I stand it’s just an ocean of heads, so.
During the last couple of months millions of children have school striked for the climate all around the world.
And yesterday we had one of our biggest strikes yet.
It is absolutely crazy that things have gone so far that children feel like they must sacrifice their education to compensate for the inaction of our leaders and most adults.
In about two weeks you have elections in Denmark, and tomorrow across Europe there are elections to the European Parliament.
We are about 508 million people living in the EU, and we use about twenty percent of the world’s resources. That is about one-fifth of the world’s resources.
What we do in the EU has enormous impact for future living conditions on this planet.
We are facing an existential threat. Time is rapidly running out.
And unless we have cut our emissions by at least 50% in the next 10 years, 220 days and about 10 hours, it is likely that we set off an irreversible chain reaction beyond human control.
And note, that these figures do not include tipping points, feedback loops, already built-in warming hidden by toxic air pollution, nor the aspect of equity in the Paris Agreement.
These calculations are however depending on technical solutions that are yet to be invented at scale.
According to the United Science, this will require unprecedented changes in all aspects of society, starting today.
If the EU really decided to face the ongoing climate emergency, and tried to act with the necessary force then this would have a huge global impact.
Of course you would think the EU elections should be about this. But it is not.
Of course you would think we would try to stop our emissions. But we are not.
In fact, the global emissions are still rising. Despite all the beautiful words and promises of our leaders and politicians.
Beautiful words like “carbon neutral Copenhagen 2025”.
It sounds really good, but if being carbon neutral does not include transportation, shopping, food, aviation, and shipping then it doesn’t really mean that much.
In fact, sending these messages, that suggest that real action is going on when it really is not, probably does more harm than good.
Lowering our emissions is far from enough. Our emissions have to stop if we are to stay below the 1.5 or 2 degree warming limit.
And for this, we can no longer settle for isolated specific actions.
For this, we need to look at the full picture.
For this, we need to treat this emergency like an emergency.
For this, we need a whole new way of thinking.
If everyone lived like we do in Sweden, Denmark and the European Union then it would already be to late to stay below the 1.5 or 2 degree limit.
If everyone lived like we do then we would already be much closer to irreversible hothouse earth.
So instead of blaming others and telling them what they should be doing, we should instead be leading the way just like we signed up for in the Paris Agreement.
Our upcoming elections should all be about this, because this could be the last chance we have to start the transformation required.
We can still fix this, but to do so we must start today.
Those who are going to be affected the most by the climate and ecological crisis are young people like me who cannot vote. So if not for yourself, then vote for us.
I can’t say enough how important these elections are but we also have to acknowledge that we already know the outcome of the elections.
And since almost no-one is aware of the full consequences of the climate crisis, then people won’t care about this, when they go to vote.
So we mustn’t be disappointed when we see the results. We must bear in mind that the fight doesn’t end here, this is just the beginning.
Everyone and everything needs to change, so why waste precious time arguing about who and what should change first.
Everyone and everything needs to change, but the bigger your platform, the bigger your responsibility.
The bigger your carbon footprint, the bigger your moral duty.
Our house is on fire. And we should get angry and transform that anger into action, and then act as if your life depended on it. Because it does.
Thank you, and tusen takk.